Warren G Sampled The Opening of “Regulate” From a VCR and Recorded The Vocals in a Closet
From their lesser-known collaborations like “I Need a Light” to their biggest hit “Regulate”, Nate Dogg and Warren G were a musical match made in heaven. The two artists always brought out the best in each other and while maintaining a chemistry that some musicians spend their entire lives trying to find. Although Warren G is still active making music and developing younger artists, people will always question what else the duo could have created if not for the untimely passing of Nate Dogg.
Those familiar with the duo’s catalog will always smile and nod whenever someone brings up their 1994 smash hit “Regulate”. The song was instrumental in getting Nate, Warren, and many other successful west coast artists at the time recognition on a national level. “Regulate” showcases Warren’s knack for flipping unexpected samples, as he utilizes a Michael MacDonald song to perfection and a snippet of dialogue from Young Guns that somehow makes perfect sense when placed at the opening of the track.
In one of the better episodes of NPR’s Microphone Check podcast, Warren explained how he was able to work the movie dialogue into his record. “I connected a VCR, the RCA jacks, into my MPC60,” he said. “And I went to the part and I played it, and just sampled the whole little part…‘We regulate any stealing of this property. We’re damn good, too.’ And I took it and pieced it up. But it — it matched up, man.”
“As long as you got somebody who can mix, it’s gonna be alright.”- Warren G
In an interview with Skee TV, Warren further explained that he assigned different parts of the dialogue to different pads on the MPC, allowing him to play the dialogue on-beat.
Another interesting DIY revelation from the Skee TV interview is that Warren recorded the vocals for the song in a closet. “We hooked the mic up in the closet and I called my engineer Greg,” he said. “He came over and recorded it and there it is.”
When pressed by DJ Skee if they ever went back and re-recorded the vocals for a later version of the song, Warren confirms that the vocals you hear on the album version were the original closet recording. The video ends with him telling an amazed Skee, “As long as you got somebody who can mix, it’s gonna be alright.”